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where to buy Seroquel without a prescription Funny People (2009), The Hurt Locker (2009)

Premiere Funny People LASo far this year, a lot of my most anticipated films have been a little underwhelming. I liked Coraline, Watchmen, Public Enemies, Star Trek and Bruno to various degrees, but I didn’t fall in film-geek love with any of them. I did have an intense fling with Crank 2 — and oh, man, it was awesome — but it was purely physical. But in the past week, I’ve seen the two best movies I’ve seen so far this year.

Funny People is a bloated, beautiful mess of a film by your hero and mine, Judd Apatow (40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up). It’s about a dying Adam Sandler — woah, let me finish, that’s not even the best part! — who takes on struggling young stand-up comic Seth Rogan as a personal assistant, in an impulsive attempt to both avoid and embrace his loneliness and self-loathing. Hilarious, I know, but trust me, this is a very, very funny movie. It’s mostly set in the world of competitive, ambitious young comedians who consider nothing off-limits in their mission to entertain and out-funny each other, and the dialogue is brilliant. Characters make cutting comments, just grazing a buried truth, and then undermining it with a punchline. Sandler is actually really solid — Punch-Drunk Love solid — and I know we were all getting tired of Seth Rogan doing his Seth Rogan thing, but he manages to give a performance more nuanced and heartfelt than anything I’ve seen form him before. Not to mention a (mostly) great supporting cast of comedians, rivals, girlfriends, girlfriend-comedians and comedian-rivals. The only problem is, Apatow seems to love these characters so much, he wanted to make about three movies with them. And then he did. And then he edited them all into this one. And one of those movies, the one which takes over the last 40 minutes, is actually not a very good movie. But I’ll take a lopsided, ambitious mess over safe and predictable any day.

The Hurt Locker, Kathryn “Point Break” Bigelow’s film about bomb-disposal experts in Iraq, is basically the complete opposite of Funny People: tightly focused, visual rather than verbal, and humourless. It’s also wired as tight as a spring about to snap. The Iraq of this movie is a place where any discarded plastic bag could contain an IED, and any cell phone could be a detonator. Also, another difference: Judd Apatow is going from great flick to great flick. If you had told me last year that the washed-up action director who would make the first great Iraq War movie would be Kathryn Bigelow, I would never have believed you. But great it is. I was shocked when the credits rolled — I couldn’t believe 131 minutes could go by so fast. It could have been another hour long and I wouldn’t have minded.

Actually, though, there is something the two films have is common — they are both about process. In Funny People we see how comedians work, trying material, bouncing it off each other, refining it. In The Hurt Locker, we see how someone goes about disabling hundreds of bombs in a one-year tour, how the insurgents and occupation forces constantly learn and adapt to each other’s technique and style. Of course, in one movie, bombing has a very different meaning than the other.

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  1. […] films, I don’t really need to tell you to see them. I’d rather tell you to go see The Hurt Locker or (should your tastes go that way) Blood Freak. But I’ll do my […]